The food delivery website market is growing at a tremendous rate.
I am talking about a rate that has outgrown dine-in traffic by 300% since 2014!
Not just that, experts have anticipated that restaurants that will not provide online food ordering will lose 70% of their market share in 2020.
This makes it important for restaurants to establish an online ordering system for which an online food delivery website is crucial.
In this post, we are going to dive into the world of online food ordering and help restaurants build their own food delivery website from scratch.
By the end of this guide you will know –
- What is a Food Delivery Website?
- Why Do Restaurants Need a Food Delivery Website?
- 5 Key Elements of Every Successful Food Delivery Website
- How to Make a Food Delivery Website?
So, stay with us until the very end to ensure you grasp all the information in the most wholesome way. Let’s get started!
What is a Food Delivery Website?
This is important.
Understanding what you are delving into is crucial to your business success.
Without understanding what a food delivery website really is, we will not be able to stay on track and reach our goals.
So, a food delivery website is built to cater to local audiences that want food from their favorite restaurant to be delivered at their door steps.
The website allows them to search for food items, manage their preferences, place an order, and make payment for the order as well.
Thus, it helps the restaurant automate a huge part of running the business – processing orders.
Why Do Restaurants Need a Food Delivery Website?
This brings us to the next point which is very important as well.
It’s the ‘WHY’ of creating a food delivery website.
Every business decision you make should revolve around the ‘WHY’ of your business or the business goals.
It is not hard to understand why a restaurant needs to go online and help their customers enjoy their favorite food from the comforts of their home.
In this section, we are going to discuss some of the best reasons why restaurants need a food delivery website.
1. Gain New Customers
Provided that the Internet and smartphone penetration has been very much successful in the past couple of decades, the chances of your target audience looking for you online is quite high.
They want to know what your restaurant has to offer and when they can order food from you. They want to know your prices and other important information that shapes their purchasing decision.
Without a food website, it is going to be very hard for them to find you. Your local customer’s attention has shifted to the Internet and therefore, you should be there as well.
2. Collect Online Bookings
A study confirmed that 70% of the customers have no issues placing orders on the restaurant’s website instead of a third-party food ordering platform.
If you have an online order system in place, your loyal customers will not have to order from you indirectly. Secondly, having an online website will help customers make table reservations.
If you are creating a website for your restaurant, make sure the customer can order a meal or book a table without having to lose his comfort.
3. Set Customer’s Expectations
Going online will give your restaurant a huge advantage when it comes to setting customer’s expectations.
When designing a website, you must make sure the theme, visuals, content, and the overall experience matches that of your restaurant’s personality. Most customers are quite skeptical about visiting a new restaurant.
They will most probably search about the restaurant and that’s exactly where the restaurant can grab their attention. A food delivery website helps restaurants showcase what ideal customer experience is at their place.
4. Gain A Competitive Edge
As I mentioned earlier, most customers are looking for restaurants online. If you are in a market that doesn’t provide the local audience with this facility, you are probably going to take a giant leap towards dominating the market with a food delivery website.
However, if you ask us, the competition in the restaurant industry is quite fierce. There are many restaurants that close soon after they open because they are not able to make a space in the market.
Having a food delivery website that shows off your exceptional meals and expertise, helps customers order food and reserve tables online, is something you just cannot ignore if you want to play a long game.
5. Better Branding Opportunities
Lastly, having an online presence helps your restaurant gain exposure and boost brand awareness.
Social media is just not enough.
You will have to be where customers are looking for you – Google. With a restaurant website, you will have great opportunities to make your name in the local market.
5 Key Elements of A Food Delivery Website
Designing a food delivery website is not a child’s play.
It requires you to plan and strategize before you take the challenge.
Website designing is a complex task that needs professionals who can manage different elements of the website and design them with perfection.
But, you start doing that, you must know the elements in the first place.
So, what are the most important factors you need to consider while designing a food delivery website?
In this section, we discuss five of the most important elements of a food delivery website.
1. Appearance and Usability
Your food delivery website must be functional and usable for the customers. It has to be simple to use and match the brand image in the process. The design shouldn’t overwhelm the customers.
Accessing the menu and getting the key information should not take much time. You must have proper Call-to-Actions that your customers can follow and get their order placed.
You don’t know where your local customers are accessing your food delivery website. It can be on a smartphone, a tablet, a laptop, or even a desktop computer.
This is why your website should be designed in a way it remains functional on all platforms. If your website isn’t responsive to the device being used, you will fail to get customers online.
3. Speed of Ordering Food
If your website is essentially for a specific purpose, let’s say getting online orders, you must make sure the process is simple and quick.
First of all, your website should load quickly and take no more than 3 seconds to do it.
Online users lack patience and therefore, you must ensure that your website provides a fast user experience as well. You can use WP Rocket to optimize your website for speed.
4. Content that Converts
The content on your website is a very important element. It is what sets the tone in the minds of the customers.
The content should be the reflection of your restaurant’s personality and help make the user experience more intuitive and smooth.
Make sure you have the best photos and textual content on the website. Also, you must make sure the content on the website is updated regularly.
5. Customer Reviews
Customer reviews is, by far, the most important element on the website because it is directly going to affect your online sales. The customer reviews is the word-of-mouth marketing you need.
People trust what other customers have to say about your restaurant.
If you have quite comprehensive customer reviews on your website, new customers will have a proper idea of how the experience will be at your restaurant.
How to Make a Food Delivery Website?
By now, you know exactly why you need to create a food delivery website and what you must make sure while you design one.
You now have your incentive and a proper foundation on which you can start creating a website.
In this section, we are going to provide you a complete step-by-step procedure to help you make a food delivery website from scratch. So, let’s get started!
1. Define the Food Ordering Flow
Navigation is going to be a huge part of your food delivery website. This is because your customers will need to get used to a certain food ordering flow for your restaurant.
There are a number of common stages in most food ordering flows active out there. Let’s discuss the stages to understand the flow better. So, firstly, the user will land on the website which can happen from different sources.
The website will showcase what’s hot at the moment and what other food items you are offering discounts. The user might also use the on-site search to choose what he wants. He can then compare the prices and ratings of different food items on the website, select the food, and place the order.
The moment the customers add the food to their cart and proceed to checkout, you can make them log in or sign up to the system by creating a new account and providing contact and bank information.
The customers will then be taken to the checkout page where they will be able to make the payment. If the payment was successful, they will receive notifications on their contact information they provided (mostly email and phone number).
The customers will then get updates about the order until they receive their food.
2. Add the Necessary Features to the Food Delivery Website
You will also have to make sure your food delivery website has all the important features added to it. These features are going to have a huge impact on the website’s usability.
To keep things simple, you will have to customize your website for three different user roles – customers, website admin, and restaurant managers. A food delivery website will function well only when the three user roles are well-connected in the back-end.
So, what are the essential features for the three roles, let’s find out.
Customers – Navigation Menu, Registration, Sign Up, Place Order, Restaurant Details, Current Offers, Address Book, Customer Support, and Rewards or Coupons.
Admin – Log in, Restaurant Management, Website Management, Order Management, Technical Payment, Payment Management.
Restaurant Managers – Sign In, Search by Food Category, Checkout Process, Choose Payment Method, Order Status and Tracking, Help, and Support.
These are some of the most common features you will find on any restaurant’s food delivery website. You can always add more features to the website if your business goals need them.
However, I highly recommend keeping things simple for all three roles. It is important that you pen down all the features you need before you start designing the website.
3. Choose the Right Platform or Build a Custom Website
There are many ways of developing a food delivery website for your restaurant. You can go for an out-of-the-box food delivery software that can be installed for your restaurant. You will get plenty of options to choose from. So, you will not be disappointed by them.
Then you can also go for custom-built software as well.
I highly recommend going for a custom-built food delivery website because it gives you an advantage over the market. So, when it comes to out-of-the-box software, you can go for Flipdish, Orders2me, SpeedLinne Pizza POS, or other similar software. WordPress is also a great option, and it’s 100% free.
On the other hand, developing a customized food delivery website will cost you a lot of money. This is because you will need to hire professionals who are experts in creating such websites.
Building a customized food delivery website will need advanced knowledge of programming and all integrations have to be done manually. It is definitely a costly but super-effective solution.
4. Set up Domain, Hosting, and Email
Now, it’s time to set up your domain, hosting, and email. So, after deciding how you want your food delivery website to be built, you will need to purchase the domain name and a hosting plan.
Choosing a domain for the website is quite a fun experience because you get to try different names for it. The objective here should be to have a domain name that matches your restaurant’s name or comes closer to it. There might be a chance that the domain name is taken.
In that case, you can try adding the city or town of your restaurant to differentiate it. Another important aspect of choosing a domain name is the domain name extension. It is highly recommended to have a .com extension for your website because most people are used to typing it.
If not that, you can always go for the country’s domain extension like .ca for Canada, .au for Australia. You should use Namecheap for finding the perfect domain. Once you have finalized the domain name and the domain name extension, you can set up the hosting. To get hosting, you have many options to choose from.
Since most website owners go for SiteGround, I advise you to do the same. SiteGround has hosting plans that are easy to set up and secure. You should go for a hosting provider that offers one-click WordPress plugins.
Next, you will have to set up a domain-based email. This enables you to use a branded email address while communicating with the customers or internally.
5. Find the Right Theme for Your Food Delivery Website
As I mentioned earlier, your website is the reflection of your brand’s personality. The theme and the content you have on it will set the tone when a potential customer lands on the website.
The theme should be selected taking the behavior and interests of your ideal customers into consideration. The kind of color palette and typography you want to have on the site will be hugely impacted by that.
In order to find the right WordPress theme for your website, you can make a simple Google search. You will get many websites that have WordPress themes on offer. I also recommend looking at your competitors’ websites to see what works and what doesn’t. Most of them are using Divi themes because, well, they have the best themes in the market at the moment.
Make sure the theme you are selecting easily integrates with the website software. Also, make sure the theme is easy to navigate and has plenty of space for putting high-quality images.
6. Add Important Integrations and Information of Your Restaurant
By now, you have the basic structure and foundation of the website ready. It’s time to start adding content about your restaurant. We are talking about menu items, prices, and associated content like descriptions and everything else. You will have to design content for your website as well.
Content on the website will play a huge role in getting conversions i.e. orders for your restaurant. You must make sure the content speaks to the customers and influences them to take the desired action.
From the homepage to about content, to food listing, everything should be designed in a way that reflects what your restaurant is all about.
Transparency is essential to your business success. Lastly, integrate the website with the food-delivery software I earlier mentioned to start taking orders online. Provide the most popular payment options to the customers to make the process of ordering food hassle-free.
7. Optimize Food Delivery Website to Meet Local Audience’s Needs
It’s time to start optimizing your food delivery website to cater to the local audience’s needs. If you want your website to be a success, you must align your website with the preferences of your local audience.
So, what exactly do you need to do to make your food delivery website more successful?
You must, as I mentioned above, provide the popular payment options in the community. From cash on delivery to credit cards, to eWallets, to net banking, to debit cards, you will have to integrate them all according to the needs of the local audience.
The food delivery business will only work well if you optimize its operations taking the local environment or market into consideration. If you are new to the city, it might take some time to understand what works and what doesn’t. Keep at it.
Lastly, make sure the restaurant menu matches the taste of the local target audience. You will not start selling if your target audience doesn’t find the menu items relatable.
Designing a restaurant’s website or any other website for that matter is a monumental task. It isn’t just about having an online real estate, it is more about creating one that provides tremendous value to the users.
Your restaurant website should be able to provide the customers with what they need in the quickest time possible. With such goals in mind, you will be very successful in designing an online food delivery website for your restaurant.
Have questions unanswered? Feel free to put them down in the comments section. We’d be happy to hear from you!
I’m the owner of Expandant and my ultimate goal is to make the internet a better place, one where people can easily find the best companies out there. If you’re one of the best companies, I hope we can work together.